Humanism is merely putting societyís moral values on that which mankind does. American moral values were originally based on Christian ethics held by the founding fathers. These Christian values have been diluted over the years and now human culture sets the moral standards through political correctness, those values which man comprehends to be important. The trouble with these standards is that it looks to man for answers instead of God, trying to give human traits to God. Surely God has given the elite intellectuals the intelligence to know what values are important, for surely Christian Biblical morals should be up dated for the time period mankind is living in. When mankind prays to God for help and has the prayer answered man gives slight praise to God, soon forgetting what the Lord has done and taking pride in human wisdom for solving the problem. Humanism makes humans great, that God solved the problem only means man is very intelligent to know where to find the answer. But God will play second fiddle to no one, including man. Godís way alone leads to Heaven. Man has almost acquired enough intelligence to know how dumb he is, how inferior he is to God. How much more there is to learn about what God would have us do, about how great His universe is. Then man must go one step farther and submit to our Lord, accepting and doing His will through faith.
God must grow weary of manís stupidity. Man knows the there is a God and looks to Him for answers while never yielding to or deciphering the true intent of Godís will. Mankind has a hot - cold relationship with God. Man turns to Him when he has a need, whether it is emotional or physical, serious or just bothersome. Once the problem is solved and God is needed no more, man grows apathetic, using his own wisdom to guide him once more. If the problem is not solved man grows cold to God, or believes there is no God, believing through human wisdom God should solve his problem, now! Human reason forgets to look for God for the answer, an answer that may alter oneís lifestyle, help give us patience, or show us another way to answer our needs. Human reason is also confused by the intellect of others. One will not take the time to read the Bible or believes he is incapable of understanding the meaning in the scriptures. This makes it easy for educated, influential, charismatic, or prideful people to confuse mankind into believing humanistic morals and values are pleasing to God. We will never understand the Bible completely, but the Holy Spirit will provide one the meaning of Godís plan if we are willing to search the scriptures for the answer. This meaning will come from the intent of the Bible, not just from verses that can be interrupted different ways. Remember everyone will be held responsible for their actions, no matter what religious leader or church one is following. It is hard to get away from humanism, for it is our natural instinct to trust societyís ideas, to accept human wisdom instead of having faith in our Lord, accepting His way. The next section will deal with looking through Godís eyes, what has happened and what our Lord would have us do.
Israel was loved and favored by God. He pledged the new covenant of salvation would come through this nation. But the Jewish people were stubborn towards the Lord. They would follow God and then turn away, so God allowed them to endure four hundred years of extremely harsh slavery in Egypt before Israel repented and the Lord freed them. But the Israelís stubborn resistance quickly returned and they had to wander in the desert before the Lord allowed them into the promised land. This nation then began to flourish, heightening with King Davidís love of the Lord and reaching its peak under the wise King Solomon. But love, not wisdom holds one in the Lord and Solomon in old age broke away from the Lord and the Jewish nation started its decline. Eventually their decline allowed them to be captured and ruled by the Romans. During this period God sent His son Jesus Christ into the world to complete the New Covenant of Salvation. Jesus tried to open peopleís hearts to the love of their Heavenly Father. To open their hearts to the Messiah, who could offer them salvation. But the Scribes and Pharisees used their own human reason, and rejected Jesus Christ. The church hierarchy had Him crucified for was it not politically correct to have one man die instead of having a nation put under more oppression? The upheaval that could follow the radical belief that this man was the Son of God, would only lessen the political power of the church. Human reason defying the will of our God.
The prophesy of the destruction of Israel with her people scattered all over the world became a reality because this nation turned from God and followed human will. Human reason bemoans the tragedy endured by the Jewish people, especially all the atrocities and genocide that happened in our generation under the Nazi regime. All should abhor this treatment, and judge this as manís inhumanity to man. Yet all these favored people had to do was bend a knee to their great God who desperately wanted them to be His children. They could have been the most blessed nation on earth. Generation upon generation had a chance to receive Godís blessing, generation upon generation had prophecy warn them. While God waited patiently. The later generations knew the atrocities that happened to their ancestors who turned from God. Yet this nation looked within human reason for their answer and never found their Lord. The Jews suffered mightily because of their inability to open their hearts to Jesus Christ. But out of love the Lord has gathered the Jewish Nation once again in their homeland. He has promised to send the Holy Spirit to them in the last days. At last they will be able to find Jesus Christ, will be the last to fill up Heaven. Man trusting in his own intelligence has caused so much pain so much suffering, forgetting to trust the love of our Lord and refusing to submit to His will.
The early followers of Jesus were not great individuals. They lived with their Master, they talked with Him daily, They saw His miracles, they were instructed by Him, and they were protected by their Lord. Yet Judas was a traitor. Peter after saying he would never deny the Lord, denied Him three times, the last time with a curse. Thomas would not believe in a risen Savior. The disciples were not brave men of their own making. After Christís death, they huddled together scared of what might happen to them. The risen Savior even told the disciples to keep low until the Holy Spirit was given them, for only then would they have the courage to preach the Gospel. It was not manís greatness nor any of his human ability that enabled him to spread the new covenant of grace through Jesus Christ. Only when the Holy Spirit comes into oneís heart is it possible to have the faith that accepts Jesus Christ as Savior. The early Christians struggled as they tried to first bring the good news to the Jewish nation, who did not receive the message well. Those preaching were always under danger, often beaten, put in jail, and even executed. Because the Jewish nation was reluctant to accept Jesus, the apostle Paul was instructed to bring the Gospel to the gentiles. Gentile nations were not all receptive to the message of Jesus Christ, often persecuting the Christians. The Romans put Christians to the ultimate test as the crowds cheered on the lions as they mauled and ate those who would not deny Jesus. The supreme test was not that you alone were going to be martyred, but watching your wife and children, often young children go into the arms of the Lord. Jesus was always with His flock, giving them the faith to stand up to a gruesome death.
Christianity withstood all the evil the Romans could throw against it. Christians kept planting the seeds of faith in the bitter fields of persecution, watching them grow and flourish. But as the church evolved, humanism once again reared itís ugly head. The physical church became intertwined with governments and received political power. The church not only mandated laws that demanded all go through the humanistic church rules to be saved, it burned any so called heretics who opposed them. The beliefs that believers could physically earn forgiveness of sins with good deeds, gifts or money. That the church had the power to pray one into Heaven after they were dead. That the church had the total control of oneís soul. The Reformation gave Jesus back to the individual believer. It reopened the Bible for all to read, as the written word of God. But most important of all it reinstituted grace as the only means that can forgive our sins. That Jesus Christ died and arose to atone for all of our sins. That He freely forgives the sins of all repentant believers.
Since then the church has splintered into many groups, each with differing ways of worship. Today the greatest danger facing us here in our great nation is the affluence of Christian people causes apathy in their hearts. It is so easy to be complacent with all the blessings our Master has given us. It is too much trouble to be pulled away from the power and pleasures of this world. We tend to forget the great gift of salvation from our Lord can be taken away at any time. That all is lost when we follow human reason. Our Saviorís grace will be planted in other bitter fields. It will grow and flourish in these bitter fields because it is such a precious gift to those who receive it. The Holy Spirit comes calling to those who will receive Him, wherever they may be. Never turn the call away, for it is a gift that may not be given again, a gift that may be given to others.
There have been many other fields of bitterness where the seed of Christís love has been planted. Africans were brought as slaves to America. Most were treated harshly without any dignity or love as fellow humans. But to ease the Christian conscious of the area, the slaves were taught about Jesus Christ. The seed was planted in the workerís hearts and it grew. The spirituals sung by the slaves were beautiful as they opened their hearts to the Lord. God uses many mysterious ways in having man meet Jesus Christ. Human reason mistakenly believes the sin generating all of the worldís social problems is slavery. But slavery was abolished nearly a century and a half ago, and the world still has not healed. The great sin that is causing all the social troubles of this world is the second most important command of our Savior. Love your neighbor as you love yourself. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. We should treat all with dignity and love. For manís greatest value is the priceless gift of Godís own Son dying for our sins. Therefore Christís blood determines our worth, and it is equal for each saved soul. We must get away from humanism which would have us concentrate on past earthly dues from wrongs which were done, we must push back humanistic traits that would have us look only what the world can do for us. We must come into the world of Jesus Christ. We must understand our Lord lets bitter fields happen to help sinners find their Savior, to grow strong in Him, to know Jesus Christ alone has the power to save us. We must understand that individually there will always be some that have bitter fields to go through. But out of our love for Christ we will help all those struggling, help them become one with Christ, therefore one with all believers.
One of the places Christianity is thriving now is Africa where there is a bitter field of war, starvation, mutilation, slavery and every conceivable inhumanity to man. There are also many bitter fields all over the world, in Russia, China, all the old Soviet block countries, and in many central American countries. All over the world the Gospel is reaching new people. The battles that have allowed Christianity to bloom are ongoing and will continue until the end of time. For though the battle is different in each region, it is the same war. The war between good and evil, between God and Satan. There is nothing easier for Satan to use than our own human nature to push us away from our Master. God has allowed many to endure the bitter fields where in desperation the seed of faith begins to grow. This seed of faith is strengthened by receiving the spiritual blessings our Lord eagerly is waiting to bestow on all believers. These spiritual blessings enable one to become race blind, color blind, ethnic blind, reaching out to all people . We focus only on the Christian soul. We must also realize mankind is a slave to so many masters. It is too easy to seek the self indulgences that come from loving ourselves more than Jesus, more than others. Until oneís self indulgences becomes their ruthless master. Our only hope of salvation is to willingly become a slave to our Lord, serving Him alone. We will now briefly discuss some worldly masters who try to rule us.
Greed and envy are on the opposite side of the coin. On the greed side are the temptation of all the pleasures that only money can buy. This leads us to put God second, to forget to love and care for those less fortunate. But probably more important is our dependence on money. The human belief that we have earned all our possessions, that what we have obtained is our own property. That if we manage our estate correctly it will carry us through our lives in the stature we want to live. We are willing to give some of our assets, providing we retain enough in reserve to insure our desired worldly lifestyle. This causes us to forget everything we have is a gift from God. Money should not be our security blanket through life, we should rely on the Lord to provide for us. There is not really a shortage of food in this world, there is only a shortage of distribution. The Lord would have us work hard, honestly, fairly, as He provides us with our daily bread. Jesus would then have us give as we are given. On the other side of the coin is envy or coveting. This is wanting what others have so bad it affects your life. You are not patient or willing to work towards your goal, but are obsessed by trying to obtain something someone else has, now! You are angry, miserable, constantly complaining. One canít possibly be happy with what our Master has provided them, they canít live with the hand the Lord has dealt them. It is only fair they should have all that their neighbor has. We should not covet for personal gain, to help our families, our nationality, or our country. Jesus told us our neighbors were all people, not any particular race, religion, or society. We should just help all people, starting with those who are the most needy. So the battle of which side the coin will fall goes on. The rich forgetting that all they have is a gift from the Lord, to be shared with all people. The envious never being happy with the Lord has given them, never realizing they possess much more than the really needy of this world.
Mankind has always had a problem of looking in the mirror and seeing only what they want to see, how great they are. Pride, vanity, ego, and with it the power, the respect, they deserve. Man forgets his imperfections, and worse yet, forgets it is only through God that these imperfections are made useful. The only pride one can have is being proud of what the Lord can accomplish through them. The realization that Christís love enables us to do our work for others, as we would want it done for us. But the human desire of pride, power, and ego is a aphrodisiac to the humanistic soul. Many want to leave their mark on life, leaving some semblance of their greatness when they depart this world. But it doesnít matter what earthly glory one leaves behind. All that is relevant is what Heavenly blessings they have stored away. Societyís concern about self esteem is misplaced. The greatest value humans possess is the love given to them by Jesus. A love so great He became man, was tortured, was put to death, and then arose from the dead. He willing did this because He loved us. He wanted to make us holy again so we could live forever in His Heavenly Kingdom. This gives one more esteem, more value, than is comprehensible. All one has to do is accept our Saviorís grace, thereby making ourselves worthy for Him.
The easiest way to delve into the sexual pleasures of this world is simply to listen to our Master. God made Adam and Eve perfect, both spiritually and physically. Only when Adam and Eve sinned were they even aware of their sexuality. God made sex for manís earthly life, and when we die there will be no sexual unions in either Heaven or Hell. We will all be brothers and sisters in Christ in Heaven, or completely lost in Hell. The sexual union God granted is between a man and woman, who have committed to a lifelong marriage. In the old covenant God cleansed His people from sexual deviation of His commands by having the offenders put to death. Today we are under the spiritual grace of Jesus Christ, and sexual deviation makes us spiritually dead to our Savior. Christís death only erased the ceremonial laws. Our Heavenly Father still hates sin, still finds sexual sin detestable. Jesus loves His Father, will always please His Father, and will always condemn any act that is detestable to His Father. But Jesus will also forgive all who are sorry for their sins, their sexual shortcomings.
A Christian marriage is only a complete marriage when both the husband and wife put Christ as the spiritual head of their physical union. All three spiritually become one, while physically the man and woman become one flesh, a new and different being. There is no equality, no rights, no individuality in this marriage, no Iís, only a complete submission unto the Lord, unto how the Lord would have a husband and wife live. Where the man would love his wife as Christ loved Christendom, willing to sacrifice his life for her, being faithful to her, giving her honor and respect. Wanting to give his wife happiness, her full potential in a Christian lifestyle. Using her talents to make the household, family, better, stronger. Where the woman would love her husband and put her family above herself. Where the wife would always be faithful to her husband, honoring him as head of the family in all Christ pleasing endeavors. All should be careful of whom they commit to, for without a true Christian spouse you will never have a complete marriage. Those who are not completely in Christ are so easy to be attracted to while steadily pulling you away from your Savior. Those who are not spiritually one with Jesus become a spouse that is harder to honor, harder to respect, harder to work with, harder to understand, to the point of disregarding them when they go against our Masterís will. Only when the union is with Jesus is it easy for both spouses to give love not take it, is it easy to give pleasure not demand it. Realizing keeping your mate in Christ is more important than personal inconveniences. Each spouse gladly quenching the sexual desires of the other against the ominous temptations of this sexually explicit world. Where two grow as one, making each stronger as they struggle through all the daily crisis thrown at them, trusting Jesus to help them find the way.
God didnít create sin, but gave us a free will which leads all to transgress against our Maker. Satan knows how to manipulate human wills, exploit each personís weakness, overwhelming us physically and mentally until we give in to temptation. There are no sins that are greater or harder to overcome, only equally hard physically and emotionally challenges for different individual weaknesses. From physical addictive problems like lust, homosexuality, pornography, drugs, alcohol, to emotional strains of accepting death, accepting the death of loved ones, accepting and caring for the elderly, the mentally impaired, the physically incapacitated, or trying to establish a Christian home as a single parent. From the problem of being rich which Jesus told us would give one slim odds of making Heaven, to the envious temptations of the poor. From avoiding or exaggerating the truth through spins, through telling direct lies, to controlling our tempers, hating others, our inability to forgive others. All these and countless other sins drag us down, are funneled through our lives until we become callous to them. We then begin justifying our sinful actions through human reason, trying to fit them into our Lordís world. We try to ease our conscience by donating money or doing good deeds to compensate for the minor sins we are unwilling to give up. We try to expand our Lordís understanding. Surely our Master loves us enough to allow us this simple pleasure to help us survive here below. Surely our Savior has the compassion to allow us leeway in what we do. Surely our Maker understands that we love Him, itís just in the modern world our lives are more challenging. Our feeble human reason only drives us from our Lord, pushing us to commit the unforgivable sin. The unforgivable sin of rejecting the Holy Spiritís call to accept Jesus Christ. The greatest catastrophe of all happens to those who believe they are Christians, on their way to Heaven. But they have locked Jesus Christ up in a figment of their own imagination, their own human reason, their own sinful will. All who call on the name of Jesus will not be saved, only those who are one with Him will pass through Heavenís gates. Our Savior told us, ask and you will be given, seek and you will find, knock and the door will open. And the key that opens our Lordís Spiritual Kingdom is simple and does not need to be elaborated upon. It is total and complete submission to Jesus Christ, rejecting our own human reason. Total submission to our Savior allows Him to come into our lives, into our hearts. This submission allows Jesus to become the focal point of our existence. Only when we completely accept our Savior's will, can we be freed by Christ.